How NOT to do Avalanche Control: Take Out Your Own Chairlift

Oh dear. In what has to be up there as one of the most disastrous attempts at avalanche control of the decade, Crystal Mountain resort out in the United States have managed to take out one of their own chairlifts after setting off a controlled (we use that word tentatively…) avalanche. 

How’s that for cranage? Photo: Crystal Mountain

In the edit above, supposedly filmed by Crystal’s owners John and Kim Kircher, the pair quickly realise that the avalanche at hand was just a tad bigger than expected, taking out trees in its path and ultimately burying the resort’s own High Campbell chairlift. Bummer dude.

The slide knocked the chairlift’s lower terminal off its foundation and toppled one of around 10 of the lift’s towers, which will obviously remain closed for the remainder of the season. Thankfully, the avalanche was set off after closing hours, and unless there were folks getting busy in the woods or foraging for berries after hours, the resort was empty and nobody was hurt (or worse).

Bummer dude. Photo: Crystal Mountain

Head here for a bunch more avalanche videos

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